INF 2176 Information Management in Organizations: Models and Platforms
Course DescriptionInstructor: Chun Wei Choo
1. The course introduces theoretical models from organization theory and information science that address two main issues:
2. The course also introduces the Intranet as a platform that supports and facilitates information and knowledge management.
- How do organizations use information to construct meaning, create new knowledge, and make decisions?
- How may organizations manage their information processes so as to improve organizational learning and effectiveness?
- What are the roles and functions of the intranet in the information use environment of an organization?
- What frameworks or principles can guide the design of Intranets as information and knowledge management platforms?
Course Learning OutcomesAt the end of this course, students should be able to:
- Understand and evaluate the information processes that enable organizational sensemaking, knowledge creation, and decision making
- Apply their understanding of how organizations use information to improve information services and practices
- Articulate the functional roles of the intranet as a platform for managing information in an organization
- Analyze the information needs and information ecology of an organization in order to design intranet applications and services.
Relationship to MI Program Learning Outcomes
This course helps students to understand and be conversant in the practice of information management as a foundation for organizational effectiveness (Program Outcome 1). The knowledge and values imparted in the course enable students to exercise leadership and care in the design and provision of information services (Program Outcome 2). Students gain an understanding of the major theories concerning information seeking and use in organizations (Program Outcome 4). Through their intranet projects, students learn how to apply technologies to the communication and use of information (Program Outcome 5).
Readings and TextsThe texts for the course are:
Choo, Chun Wei. 2006. The Knowing Organization: How Organizations Use Information to Construct Meaning, Create Knowledge, and Make Decisions. (Second edition) New York: Oxford University Press. [Required] Full text available from Oxford Scholarship Online.A list of readings is here.
Choo, Chun Wei, Brian Detlor, and Don Turnbull. 2000. Web Work: Information Seeking and Knowledge Work on the Web. Boston, MA: Kluwer Academic Press. [Recommended]
Kennedy, Mary Lee, and Dysart, Jane. (Eds.). 2007. Intranets for Info Pros. Medford, NJ: Information Today Inc. [Recommended]
EvaluationThere are two assignments.
In the first assignment, each student writes an essay focusing on one of the principal modes of organizational information use (sense making, knowledge creation, or decision making). The essay should also discuss how information systems or information services may be designed and managed to support that mode of information use. [40%]
In the second assignment, students work in groups of four to design and partially implement an Intranet site, based on an analysis of the information ecology and information behaviors of a real organization. The design will include content and applications that address the organization's information and knowledge management needs. Each group will present and demonstrate the use of its intranet. [50%]
Students are encouraged to prepare for each class by completing suggested readings and cases, and participating in class discussions and presentations. [10%]
Instructor AvailabilityStudents should feel free to discuss course-related matters with the instructor at any time. Chun Wei's office is Room 628; telephone number 416.978.5266; e-mail . Office hours TBA.
Course WebsiteCourse descriptions, schedules, reading and resource lists, assignments, and lecture slides are on the course website and course wiki, which may be accessed from
Academic integrityPlease consult the University's site on Academic Integrity. The iSchool has a zero-tolerance policy on plagiarism as defined in section B.I. 1. (d) of the University's Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters. You should acquaint yourself with the Code and Appendix A Section 2. Please review the material you covered in the Cite it Right workshop and consult the site How Not to Plagiarize.
Cite it Right covers relevant parts of the U of T Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters. It is expected that all iSchool students take the Cite it Right workshop and the online quiz. Completion of the online Cite It Right quiz should be made prior to the second week of classes. To review and complete the workshop, go to the Inforum Orientation Workshops site.
Accommodation of students with disabilitiesStudents with diverse learning styles and needs are welcome in this course. In particular, if you have a disability or health consideration that may require accommodations, please feel free to approach me and/or the Accessibility Services Office as soon as possible. The Accessibility Services staff are available by appointment to assess specific needs, provide referrals and arrange appropriate accommodations. The sooner you let them and me know your needs, the quicker we can assist you in achieving your learning goals in this course.
Writing supportThe SGS Office of English Language and Writing Support provides writing support for graduate students. The services are designed to target the needs of both native and non-native speakers of English and include courses, workshops, individual writing consultations, and online resources. Please avail yourself of these services.
GradingPlease consult the iSchool's official interpretation of letter grades and the University's policy on Graduate Grading and Evaluation Practices. These will form the basis for grading in the course.